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Looking at potential Raptors vs. Nets playoff matchup

If the playoffs started now (or when the League comes back), then we’d see Toronto-Brooklyn in the first round. Let’s go over what the matchup might look like.

Brooklyn Nets guard Caris LeVert shoots against Toronto Raptors center Serge Ibaka during the second half at Barclays Center.  Andy Marlin-USA TODAY Sports

It’s another day without the NBA. I know, things are beginning to get tough, but all we have is time and hope that the League will start again soon. For now, we can only speculate as to what the playoff picture will look like, though there’s a chance that this is exactly the picture we’ll be looking at in a few months. The NBA could opt to roll right into the postseason if the season resumes in June. If that’s the case, we already know what the playoff matchups will look like in both the Western and Eastern Conferences.

Today, we’ll be taking a look at the potential No. 2 seed Toronto Raptors hosting the No. 7 seed Brooklyn Nets in the first round of the 2020 NBA Playoffs.

Raptors vs. Nets series breakdown

Raptors record: 46-18
Nets record: 30-34
Season series: TOR 3-1

Imagine if this series were to take place with both teams at full strength. The Raptors have dealt with injuries all season long, but at 100% health would be able to contend for another title in the East. It’s looking like exactly that could end up happening if the league decides to go right into the postseason. Marc Gasol, Norman Powell, Fred VanVleet, Pascal Siakam and Serge Ibaka would all be able to get fully healthy for a playoff run.

On the Brooklyn side, we don’t quite know how the Nets will approach Kevin Durant and Kyrie Irving. They could try and get both back in the lineup if the playoffs are pushed into the Summer. Durant wasn’t expected to come back this season from a torn Achilles tendon. He’s looked great in practice, though, and there’s no question KD could play in a game today and look like an All-Star. Kyrie’s timeline from shoulder surgery would probably line up with the NBA returning, but it’d be somewhat of a rush back. It’s in the Nets’ best interests to have both Kyrie and KD ready to go for next season. Would it be worth risking the future to chase a surprise title this season? Probably not.

The edge has to go to the Raptors if KD and Kyrie don’t come back. Toronto has made easy work of the Nets all season and would have every player good to go. The Nets lack size and length in the front court, a big plus for the Raptors, who have two legit veteran centers in Ibaka and Gasol, as well as Pascal Siakam, OG Anunoby, Rondae Hollis-Jefferson and Chris Boucher.